The Philippine auto industry’s passenger car sales may be slowing but it’s quite the opposite for the commercial vehicle sector. In line with this renewed favor for larger vehicles for commercial and industrial applications, Isuzu Philippines is looking into expanding into a new segment: light commercial vehicles (LCV). The recent implementation of the Euro-4 emissions requirement for all new vehicles has forced some of the most popular choices for small and medium enterprises into retirement.
Isuzu is looking into the possibility of bringing in another vehicle to fill in the gap left by the ubiquitous vehicle. The product is already widely used by our ASEAN neighbor, Indonesia, in the form of the Traga. The Traga is one of Isuzu Indonesia's smallest truck cab and chassis platforms, and is much smaller than the QKR platform. In fact, dimensions and specifications-wise, it's very close to the Mitsubishi L300 cab and chassis (CC). The small truck is manufactured in Indonesia and is powered by a Euro-2 engine.
Isuzu Philippines (IPC) is very interested in the model and sees a wide range of applications for it in our market. To tease potential commercial clients and to assess its feasibility in our market, IPC will be displaying the Traga at the 7th Philippine International Motor Show.
If interest and demand is high for the model, it could slot right below the QKR and serve as an ideal business vehicle for small and medium enterprises. It will also serve as a viable platform for a Class 1 modern PUV.
Currently, the Traga is only manufactured in Indonesia in a right hand drive configuration. Also of note is that its current engine is only Euro-2 compliant. However, if enough interest is stirred up for the Traga, Isuzu might want to look into manufacturing a left-hand drive Euro-4 emissions standards version for the country. If these changes are made, the Traga could potentially be a very popular choice in the Philippines, further widening Isuzu's lead in the commercial segment over its competitors.